Transformation Corner: DLA: an intregal partner in OC-ALC transformation effort
By Robert Shannon, 76th Maintenance Wing
/ Published August 16, 2007
TINKER AIR FORCE BASE --
While visiting Tinker Air Force Base in 2004, Rear Adm. Michael J. Lyden, then Aviation Center commander for the Defense Logistics Agency, recognized a tremendous opportunity for DLA to contribute to the 76th Maintenance Wing's Transformation Program.
DLA supplies the nation's military services and several civilian agencies with the critical resources they need to accomplish their worldwide missions. Since its creation in 1961, DLA has grown to become a worldwide logistics combat support operation, supplying almost every consumable item America's military services need to operate.
Since DLA is the wing's primary supplier of parts and end items, the landmark decision was made to integrate DLA's best practices into the wing's supply chain operations in coordination with the Wing's lean transformation of all depot processes. To best achieve and expedite this challenging and yet exciting initiative, DLA created a new position to thrust a DLA representative in the thick of 76 Maintenance Wing's transformation.
Teri Gary was brought on as the Defense Supply Center Richmond, Va. Transformation liaison officer in September 2004. She made an immediate impact on the 76th MXW Transformation Program, bringing her unique supply chain management experience and understanding of DLA's practices to the Transformation Team, consisting of Government, Union, and contractor personnel.
As the DLA representative in the 76th MXW Transformation office, Ms. Gary has partnered with the Team Battelle supply chain management leader, Shawn Tellers. Ms. Gary and Mr. Tellers have visited DLA field activities to collect information and have developed strategies to ensure parts are available to meet lean production requirements.
"We are streamlining the forecasting process, moving assets closer to the consumer and pursuing strategic and long-term sources to keep the parts' pipeline full," said Ms. Gary.
"DLA provides 70 percent of the parts that are consumed on the shop floor," said Mr. Tellers. "So given the dynamic landscape of the (Department of Defense) Logistics environment and the future impact of the impending Base Realignment and Closure initiatives, it is critical we continue to refine the process by which the Air Force and DLA collaborate to provide world class supply chain supportability."
To help meet such needs, DLA is undergoing major changes of its own.
DLA is in the process of implementing a Business Systems Modernization Program, which replaces government built operational systems with commercial software.
"BSM is more than a software solution," Ms. Gary said. "It's a complete overhaul of our business practices with upgrades that will yield better support to our customers."
Along with BSM, DLA is also implementing customer relationship management to focus on major customers and tailor services to enhance support.
As a member of the supply and support cell design teams, Ms. Gary successfully integrated BSM jobs into the new lean/cellular structure. The F100 Engine cell design layout includes space for a DLA Customer Account Specialist and Demand Planner.
The CAS will work parts issues to prevent work stoppages, and the DP will forecast future requirements. By locating DLA personnel in the lean cells, DLA gains a better understanding of its customer's needs and is better able to support the workload.
"This is a critical time for Team Tinker," said Ms. Gary. "DLA is committed to doing everything possible to support the transformation and improve the wing's supply chain. We have brought in specialists to meet our customer's needs, and we will continue to expand DLA's presence at Tinker as the transformation progresses."
In addition, to Ms. Gary, DLA's Aviation Center has stationed a team leader and three CASs at Tinker to synchronize DLA support with the Wing's supply needs. Neal Miller serves as the team leader and Joe McRoy provides commodities support. Angie Larson assists aircraft and Eyvette Preston supports propulsion.
"Tinker is our prototype," explained Ms. Gary. "Our plan is to build a little and test a little -- ultimately, revolutionizing our business. Partnering with our customers, though, is our solution to implementing BSM and CRM and, when we succeed, DLA and our customers including OC-ALC, will be able to provide improved support to the warfighter."